Top Turkish, US Diplomats Discuss Eastern Mediterranean Over Phone

ANKARA, TURKEY 

Turkey’s Foreign Minister held a phone conversation with his American counterpart on Monday, according to the diplomatic sources.

Mevlut Cavusoglu and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo discussed matters related to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and the Eastern Mediterranean.

Over the weekend Pompeo visited Southern Greek Cyprus, on the heels of lifting the US arms embargo on the country.

Turkey decried both moves, saying that Pompeo should also have visited the TRNC and that lifting the arms embargo only raised tensions in the region.

Tensions have recently escalated over the issue of energy exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Greece has disputed Turkey’s energy exploration in the region, trying to box in Turkish maritime territory based on small islands near the Turkish coast.

Turkey — the country with the longest coastline on the Mediterranean — has sent out drill ships to explore for energy on its continental shelf, saying that both Turkey and the Turkish Cyprus have rights in the region.

In order to reduce tensions, Turkey has called for dialogue to ensure fair sharing of resources.

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